What will the travel restrictions be after Brexit?

Brexit: Expert outlines potential travel changes for UK citizens

Once the transition period ends on December 31, going back and forth between the UK and Europe is going to be a very different experience. Come January 1, freedom of movement between the UK and the EU will end with immediate effect. From this moment, the ease with which the British have holidayed worked and lived in the EU for decades will come to an abrupt end.

Will I need a visa?

Not if you are visiting as a tourist for a holiday.

But you will need one if you are planning to spend an extended amount of time on the continent.

You will be able to stay for up to 90 days in any 180-day period in EU countries.

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Travel to Ireland will not change from January 2021.

However, it is possible when you enter another country come January, you will need to show evidence of onward or return travel.

You may also need to prove you have enough money to cover the costs of your trip.

Border control will be able to ask you more questions regarding your trip – for inter-EU travel, border officials can only check your travel documents are valid and belong to you.

Deeper checks could come in from January – they may ask you for the purpose of your visit, where you are staying, how long you plan to stay, among other questions.

You will also have to use separate lanes from EU, EEA and Swiss citizens at border control – however, countries receiving a lot of visitors from the UK may make special arrangements.

Also, your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will not be valid as of January 1.

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Will my passport be valid?

Even though your burgundy passport is emblazoned with “European Union” on the cover, it will still be a valid travel document come the new year.

However, passport validity rules will become tighter, meaning you will need to have more time left on your passport if you need to travel.

If you have less than six months validity left on your passport, you will need to get it renewed if you want to travel to the EU.

Pet travel

Environment Secretary George Eustice said owners will not be able to use their EU pet passports once the current Brexit transition period finishes at the end of the year.

The Government had applied for the UK to be in Part 1 of the EU Pet Travel scheme, which would have meant little change to the current arrangements, however, Mr Eustice said it was more likely to be in Part 2.

He said: “We’re likely to be listed in the EU’s annex 2, the sort of second category, which means whereas in the past you might have had a pet passport, in future you’d need a certificate from the vet instead of the passport.”

Under the Part 2 rules, owners need to visit an official vet no more than 10 days before travelling to get an animal health certificate confirming their pet has been microchipped and vaccinated against rabies.

This will not just apply to pets but will also apply to guide and assistance dogs.

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